• Laura Chaparro, science journalist

    Tattoos: what are the risks for the skin?

    28 Nov

    Tattoos are fashionable; even children get henna tattoos. However, medical studies indicate that they are not entirely harmless and health authorities warn of the risks.

     

    Tattooing, popular as a mark of individuality, as a cultural practice or to indicate affection or admiration, is on the increase, especially among younger people. Although tattoo parlours in Western countries observe strict health safeguards, the most important question still remains to be answered: are tattoos harmful to the skin? Read More

  • Laura Chaparro, science journalist

    Women, men and children: three different skins

    27 Nov

    Babies’ skin changes rapidly; during puberty skin becomes adult; and at maturity women’s skin ages faster than men’s one.

     

    Skin colour is one of the main differentiating features between people of different ethnic origins. Sex and age are further differentiating factors: male skin is unlike female skin and baby skin is very different from adult skin. When they come into the world, newborns have deep red skin, with bluish tones in their hands and feet. The colours darken slightly before the baby draws its first breath. Read More

  • Anna Solana, science journalist

    Are parabens dangerous?

    26 Nov

    Although many scientists deny the health risks and consider parabens to be irreplaceable, the alarm has sounded. France even wants to ban parabens by law. The cosmetics industry is beginning to develop paraben-free formulations.

     

    The alarm was raised in 2004 when the Journal of Applied Toxicology published a study by Dr. Philippa Darbre and co-workers from the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Reading (United Kingdom). The study pointed to the high paraben levels in tissue samples from 18 breast tumours, indicating the possible influence on oestrogen activity of parabens, chemicals used as preservatives in the food, pharmaceuticals and cosmetics industries. Read More

  • Fede Montagud, editor

    Detect melanomas with your iPhone

    25 Nov

    Skin Scan is a new Apple App Store application that analyses moles and marks on the skin. A simple photo is analysed and compared with a previous photo using a custom-designed algorithm that calculates the fractal dimensions of the mole. The app alerts the user if they need to visit a dermatologist.

     

    The creators of Skin Scan, including two dermatologists and two mathematicians, maintain that it is well worth spending ten minutes analysing your skin if it can save ten years of your life. Skin Scan was not designed, however, to replace regular medical check-ups.

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